Caribbean Report 14-07-2003



Table of Contents

1. Headlines (00:00-00:27)
2. Montserrat’s Governor Tony Longrigg says that the health threat from the heavy volcanic ash is being monitored. Islanders have taken to wearing ash masks to avoid breathing in the polluted air. The Governor provides details of the clean-up and aid operations via a telephone interview (00:28-03:11)
3. In Guyana, a change to the law that would ban discrimination against homosexuals appears unlikely. Although Guyana’s Parliament voted for such a change two years ago, President Barrath Jagdeo refuses to sign the law because of intense lobbying from religious leaders not in support (03:12-05:36)
4. MPs in Trinidad and Tobago react to a sharp rise in kidnapping by approving tough new laws but the government believes these measures do not go far enough. With a slim four-seat majority in Parliament some Opposition support is necessary to make existing laws even tougher (05:37-08:57)
5. There is a staggering eighty percent reduction in the Caribbean’s coral reefs over the past thirty years according to a UK report. Causes of the decline are both natural and man-made. Dr. Isabel Cortes, a specialist in tropical marine biology at the UK University of East Anglia (UEA) says there is reason to be concerned (08:58-09:56)
6. The three-day conference of Rastafarians at The University of the West Indies, Jamaica is drawing to a close. Hundreds of ‘dreads’ from all over the world have been discussing their big issues during this ‘Rastafari Global Conference’. One of the organisers Sister Mitzi Williams provides highlights of these discussions (09:57-12:41)
7. Tributes pour in for Nelson Mandela who is celebrating his eighty-fifth birthday. Barbadian black activist David Commissiong hails ‘Madiba’ as a hero to the Caribbean and correspondent Ken Richards adds his congratulations (12:42-15:31)